Spring Valley Elementary School collectively walked a mile in its own shoes Friday afternoon during the Bramlage Family Walk a Mile event.

The weather was pleasant as students, family members, and employees of Spring Valley walked three laps around the school building.

Parent Nicole Williams, who has a student at Spring Valley, was one of the participants in the event.

“I think it’s awesome,” she said. “I’m enjoying being able to participate and walking with our children on this mile. So it’s great.”

Williams said she stresses exercise at home, as well.

“Athletics, thing of that nature — it’s something that we love to do,” she said.

Gym instructor Brian Forester was in charge of making the Spring Valley’s part of the district-wide event happen.

The event was started by the Geary Community Healthcare Foundation to honor the Bramlage family, who perished in a plane crash in 2012. Becky Bramlage had been president of Unified School District 475’s Board of Education and so the school district enjoys honoring her memory when possible, according to Forester.

He also appreciates the event for the fitness aspect of it.

“It gets the kids outside, it gets the kids working, moving, walking,” he said. “We have a lot of kids, that when they go home, they don’t take the opportunity to enjoy the nice weather and get outside and play with their friends and play games.”

Forester said it seemed like recesses grew shorter and shorter as time wore on and children had fewer chances to go outdoors during the school day.

This event mitigated the impact of time spent indoors.

Educator Nichole Monroe enjoyed walking with the students.

“It gets the kids outside, it gets them some fresh energy,” she said. “Our principal teaches about how exercise helps our brain and development and stuff, so this just reenforces that.”

Spring Valley Elementary School Principal Sierra Jackson puts a lot of stress on children staying healthy. Classes have regular “brain breaks” throughout the school day and the school routinely holds family fun and fitness nights.

Jackson was pleased to have her school be a part of the event.

“It’s fun for the kids and it helps support the community ... We focus a lot on healthy lifestyles,” she said. “So this is kind of fun to show that you can walk for a cause.”

Jackson also thought it was good that the district offered door prizes for children and adult participants, something that was kept secret from the children at first.

“It’s kind of a nice bonus for the end,” she said.

Jackson feels it’s important for children to learn to exercise as well as engage in traditional academic pursuits.

“We talk about how if you exercise, it gives you more brain power,” she said. “So we talked about, you know, you’re going to be a better learner because you’re also going to feel better and you’re going to have more energy, so it’s really exciting that we do events like this to help kids promote healthy lifestyles.”

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